May 07, 2013 - 4:52 pm
Esophagectomy was December 10, 2010. Recovery and all was pretty good until October 2012 when swallowing difficulties resulted in my first dilation. Scar tissue had decreased opening to about 10mm so I went thru 4 dilation's in 5 weeks eventually improving swallowing. Then in January 2013 symptoms began to return and I decided it was time for a second opinion, which Dr. Marks fully supported. He sent me to UAB and Dr. Wilcox.
Dr. Wilcox pretty much preformed the same procedure but injected the scar tissue with a steroid. Steroids he said had been shown to make the dilation somewhat more lasting. The dilation had to be preformed in stages since the stricture was so severe but after the first one I could immediately tell a big difference. One week later, the second exact same procedure and all was GREAT. that is until April when I noticed something was not quite right. Once again he went in to dilate, unfortunately this time he found a mass of concern! No injection this time cause that alien was down there. Pathology could not completely rule upon it without additional samples. Soooo, a second visit last week obtained additional sample and since he was down there...another dilation but again with no injection.
So now I wait for that damn ominous phone call while I enjoy this Beautiful Sunny Cool Spring Day in Birmingham Alabama as I sit beneath the buttocks of Vulcan.
For those that must endure the seemingly endless dilation's...maybe a discussion with the doc about steroid injections that might improve your outcome. I hope so. In any event Thank God for those people who have the desire to fight and find a cure this stupid disease.